After earning a share of the Mountain West Conference regular season title, BYU (23-8, 11-3 MWC) received an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament as a No. 12 seed facing No. 5-seed University of Connecticut (21-9, 10-6 Big East) Thursday at Spokane Arena in Spokane, Wash. It is the opening game, starting at 11:40 a.m. PST (12:40 p.m. MST). The Cougars are in the South Regional. The winner advances to face the winner of No. 4-seed Stanford (23-8) and San Diego (18-11) Saturday at 12:20 p.m. PST (1:20 p.m. MST). Due to BYU's policy to not play on Sunday, if the Cougars advance to next week's regional action the NCAA has determined it will send the Cougars to the Midwest Regional in Minneapolis (Thursday, Saturday venue) instead if the South Regional in San Antonio (Friday, Sunday venue). NCAA Tournament games are being televised on CBS. The radio broadcast of the BYU-UConn game can be heard on KSL Newsradio 1160 and the Cougar Sports Network, beginning with a one-hour pregame show. KSL's Greg Wrubell will call the play-by-play action with Mark Durrant providing analysis. Live audio is available on the basketball page of the official BYU athletics website, byucougars.com, and on KSL.com.
GAME #32 FAST FACTS (NCAA TOURNAMENT GAME #1)
BYU (23-8, 11-3 MWC), No.12-seed vs. CONNECTICUT (21-9, 10-6 Big East), No.5-seed
THURSDAY, MARCH 20, 2003
SPOKANE ARENA (12,309)
11:40 a.m. PST (12:40 p.m. MST)
BYU, Steve Cleveland (108-77 in sixth year; same overall)
UConn, Jim Calhoun (397-158 in 17th year; 645-295 in 31st year overall)
Series: First meeting
KSL Newsradio 1160 AM (Cougar Sports Network)
Pregame Air Time: 10:40 a.m. PST (11:40 a.m. MST)
Play-by-Play: Greg Wrubell
Game Analyst: Brian Santiago
Live audio links are available at byucougars.com/basketball_m/ (select 2002-03 schedule) and on KSL.com.
BYU's Probable Starters:
Pos. # Name Ht. Wt. Yr. PPG RPG
F 3 Mark Bigelow 6-7 195 Jr. 14.0 3.6 2.3 apg
F 52 Jared Jensen 6-9 250 So. 7.6 3.3
C 55 Rafael Araujo 6-11 265 Jr. 12.2 9.0
G 2 Travis Hansen 6-6 210 Sr. 16.6 4.7 2.4 apg
G 24 Kevin Woodberry 6-0 170 Jr. 6.3 2.2 2.5 apg
Pos. # Name Ht. Wt. Yr. PPG RPG
G 14 Ricky Bower 6-4 185 Jr. 5.3 1.4
F 5 Jake Shoff 6-9 265 Jr. 2.4 2.9
F 15 John Allen 6-7 215 So. 2.6 1.3
G 10 Terry Nashif 5-10 165 So. 2.2 1.7 2.2 apg
G 4 Luiz Lemes 6-3 180 Jr. 1.8 0.8
G 12 Marc Roberts 6-3 205 So. 1.7 1.1
C 40 Dan Howard 7-0 225 Jr. 1.3 0.9
F 32 Bart Jepsen 6-9 235 Jr. 0.9 0.7
UNIVERSITY OF CONNECTICUT HUSKIES
The UConn Huskies are 21-9 after going 10-6 in the Big East Conference. The Huskies are led by the sophomore duo of Ben Gordon (6-2, 195, G) and Emeka Okafor (6-9, 252, F/C). Gordon is averaging 19.5 ppg, 5.0 apg and 4.4 rpg while Okafor adds 15.5 ppg, 11.0 rpg and 4.7 blocks per game. Senior Tony Robertson (6-2, 200, G) adds 10.3 ppg and 3.2 rpg. The Huskies shoot .475 as a team from the floor, .386 on threes and .674 from the line. They held teams to .380 shooting, including .320 on threes. UConn averages 80.0 ppg while allowing 71.4 and have outrebounded opponents 42.7 to 36.8. UConn is 6-4 over its last 10 games but has won three of its last four with wins at Boston College (91-54), and vs. Seton Hall (83-70) and Syracuse (80-67) at the Big East Tournament. UConn is coming off a 74-56 loss to Pittsburgh in the Big East Tournament final Saturday night in Madison Square Garden. Pitt improved to 26-4 on the season and the Huskies fell to 21-9. The game was UConn's eighth appearance in a BIG EAST final and the Huskies now have an overall record of 5-3 in these games. UConn was led in scoring by Taliek Brown with 15 points and Ben Gordon with 13. UConn committed 20 turnovers, its most in the 2003 BIG EAST Tournament which Pitt converted into 25 points. UConn's Emeka Okafor and Gordon were named to the All-Tournament Team.?
TOP CONNECTICUT PLAYERS (*possible starters)
POS. # NAME HT. WT. YR. PPG RPG
G 4 *Ben Gordon 6-2 195 So. 19.5 4.4 5.0 apg
C 50 *Emeka Okafor 6-9 252 So. 15.5 11.0 4.7 bpg
G 32 Tony Robertson 6-2 200 Sr. 10.3 3.2
F/G 31 *Rashad Anderson 6-5 190 Fr. 8.4 1.1
F/G 33 Denham Brown 6-5 205 Fr. 7.8 3.4
G 12 *Taliek Brown 6-1 200 Jr. 7.8 2.8 4.8 apg
F 23 Marcus White 6-8 215 Fr. 4.0 5.5
F 11 *Hilton Armstrong 6-10 210 Fr. 3.0 3.0
F 30 Shamon Tooles 6-5 225 Jr. 2.0 2.5
F 25 Mike Hayes 6-8 236 Sr. 2.3 3.1
C 20 Justin Brown 7-0 252 Sr. 1.0 1.5
This will be the first meeting between the Cougars and Huskies. BYU has a 13-23 record against Big East Conference teams.
BYU NCAA NOTABLES
-- This will be BYU's 20th NCAA Tournament appearance. The Cougars have an 11-22 record in their prior 19 NCAA Appearances. They last advanced to the NCAA Tournament in 2001. BYU is 7-12 in its opening round games in NCAA Tournament play. BYU coach Steve Cleveland has guided the Cougars to the NCAA Tournament twice in his six years at the helm since taking over a program that was 1-25 the season before his arrival. He has led BYU to postseason play in each of the last four years.
-- BYU has lost in the first round in its last two NCAA appearances. BYU's last NCAA win was in 1993 as a No. 7 seed in Chicago when the Cougars defeated SMU, 80-71. BYU lost to No. 2-seed Kansas, 90-76, in the second round that year. The last time BYU advanced out of the second round was in 1981 when the Cougars (as a No. 6 seed), defeated Princton, 60-51 before upsetting No. 3-seed UCLA 78-55. BYU went on to defeat Notre Dame on Danny Ainge's last-second, length-of-the-court dash, 51-50, to advance to the Regional Finals before losing to Ralph Sampson and No. 1-seed Virginia, 74-60.
-- This year BYU played 11 games against eight teams that earned an invitation to the NCAA Tournament. BYU had a 5-6 record in those games (Arizona State 1-0, San Diego 1-0, Utah State 1-0, Colorado State 2-1, Weber State 0-1, Creighton 0-1, Oklahoma State 0-1, Utah 0-2).
-- Six of BYU's eight losses this year game against teams that qualified for the NCAA Tournament. UNLV and San Francisco were the two teams to beat BYU that didn't advance to the NCAA tournament.
-- BYU coach Steve Cleveland and UConn coach Jim Calhoun met for the first time last year after the NCAA Final Four. The two coaches ended up golfing together with their sons in Hilton Head, South Carolina.
POTENTIAL SECOND ROUND OPPONENTS
The winner of the BYU-UConn game will face the winner of No. 4-seed Stanford vs. No. 13-seed San Diego. Saturday's second round game will start at 12:20 p.m. PST (1:20 p.m. MST).
Stanford received the fourth seed and will face West Coast Conference champion University of San Diego in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. Winners of 11 of its last 14 games, Stanford has a 23-8 overall record. Stanford finished the Pac-10 season, 14-4, two games better than a year ago. The Cardinal has posted 20 more wins for the ninth straight season, and 10 or more wins in Pac-10 play also for a ninth straight year. Stanford lost two juniors Curtis Borchardt, Casey Jacobsen as first round picks in the 2002 NBA Draft and Teyo Johnson (also wide receiver on the football team who has declared for the NFL Draft). Stanford's 23 wins include five victories over nationally ranked teams. Stanford was ranked 14th in the USA Today/ESPN poll and 15th in the Associated Press poll (March 10). Stanford is coming off a 79-74 loss in the opening round of the Pac-10 Conference tournament. BYU has a 4-1 record vs. Stanford, including an upset win over the No. 13 Cardinal last year at the Las Vegas Showdown.
SAN DIEGO TOREROS
The USD Toreros became the 2003 West Coast Conference Tournament Champions after their 72-63 win over Gonzaga in the title game on March 10th to earn the league's automatic bid into the tournament. USD (18-11) received a No. 13 seed from the NCAA Tournament Selection Committee, with Stanford (23-8) getting a No. 4 seed. San Diego is 0-2 against BYU, including a 64-49 loss this season in Provo, Utah. This is the USD men's basketball program's third trip to the NCAA Tournament, and first time in sixteen seasons. USD's first trip came in 1984 with coach Jim Brovelli (18-10 record) and the Toreros were knocked off by Princeton, 65-56. The second time came in 1987 with coach Hank Egan (24-6) and the Toreros were downed by Auburn, 62-61.
Led by senior guard Travis Hansen, junior swingman Mark Bigelow and junior center Rafael Araujo, the Cougars (23-8) earned an 11-4 non-conference record and shared the MWC regular season title with Utah at 11-3 before a 1-1 record at the MWC Tournament. Hansen leads the team in scoring (16.6) and blocks (18) and is second in assists (2.4) and irebounds (4.7); Bigelow is second in scoring (14.0), third in rebounding (3.6) and the team's top three-point shooter (62-144); while Araujo is the third-leading scorer (12.2) and top rebounder (9.0). Sophomore forward Jared Jensen adds 7.6 points and 3.3 rebounds while JC transfer Kevin Woodberry starts at the point averaging 6.3 points and 2.5 assists. Coach Cleveland has more talent on the bench this year than in past seasons. Though he has been slowed by a back injury, Wisconsin transfer junior guard Ricky Bower leads the reserves, averaging 5.3 points and shooting 44.6 percent from behind the arc. The Cougars shoot .469 from the floor, .384 on threes and an MWC-best .753 from the line. BYU tops the MWC on defense, allowing .409 field goalshooting and .308 three-point shooting. BYU scores 72.5 ppg while allowing 63.7. BYU went 13-1 at home and 10-7 away, including a 4-2 neutral record and 6-5 road mark. Cleveland has used five starting lineups. Sophomore guard Marc Roberts came out of a possible redshirt season after 13 games, playing at Weber State. Freshmen guards Austin Ainge and Jermaine Odjegba are redshirting this season.
-- BYU earned a share of the Mountain West Conference regular season title with Utah at 11-3. It is the second time in the last three years the Cougars have shared the regular season title. BYU last earned a piece of the conference regular season title in 2001 when there was a three-way tie at 10-4 with Wyoming and Utah. BYU went on to win the MWC Tournament that year and was the lone MWC team to advance to the NCAA Tournament. In BYU's 101st year of basketball, the Cougars now have claimed 26 conference championships.
-- Since the beginning of February, BYU has won 10 of its 13 games. The Cougars have won five or their last six, coming off their upset loss to Colorado State in the MWC Tournament semifinals.
-- At 23-8, BYU is one win away from the most wins in a season under Steve Cleveland (24-9 in 2001). Only eight BYU teams have ever achieved more victories. The BYU record for wins is 28 (9 losses) in 1951 when the Cougars won the national title as NIT champs. This is Cleveland's third 20-win season in the last four years. The only BYU coaches to have more 20-win seasons are Stan Watts (7) and Roger Reid (6). Cleveland joins Frank Arnold and Ladell Andersen with three 20-win seasons.
-- BYU has traditionally finished strong under Steve Cleveland. BYU is 18-9 in March under Steve Cleveland, including this year's 5-1 record in March.
-- This year, BYU has a 7-1 record against teams that were conference champions last year. BYU is 12-5 against teams that qualified for postseason play last season.
-- BYU swept five MWC opponents this year. Its three league losses came at UNLV and to Utah (twice).
-- BYU's 22,702 attendance vs. CSU in its last home game was the largest crowd since 1992 and the 21st largest crowd in school history. BYU averaged 14,468 this year in its 14 home games.
-- BYU finished the season 13-1 at home this year. Lone senior Travis Hansen concluded his three seasons as a Cougar having lost only once at home. BYU earned a 44-1 record in Hansen's three years at BYU -- the best three-year home record in school history. The second-best home record over three years was a 39-2 mark from 1979-81 in Danny Ainge's final three seasons.
-- With its 91-81 win at New Mexico, BYU scored the most points on an opponent's homecourt since defeating Air Force 94-82 in 1994. Five Cougars reached double figures for the fist time since December 2000.
-- Senior Travis Hansen and juniors Dan Howard and Bart Jepsen are the only Cougars who were on BYU's NCAA team in 2001. Jepsen, however, redshirted the season and did not play in the game vs. Cincinnati in San Diego. Howard played only two minutes after the game was decided while Hansen came off the bench to play 13 minutes, pulling down 7 rebounds while scoring 2 points. Junior guard Ricky Bower is the other current Cougar with NCAA Tournament experience. He played on Wisconsin's 2001 NCAA team, going 2-2 on threes in the Badgers' 50-49 first-round loss to Georgia State.
BYU EARNED SHARE OF MWC CROWN ON NIGHT AINGE WAS HONORED
PROVO -- The largest Marriott Center crowd in 11 years (22,702) honored BYU hall-of-famer Danny Ainge and saw the Cougars win a share of the Mountain West Conference Championship by beating Colorado State 67-55 Saturday night. "I have a great appreciation for where we started, and tonight to see the arena full was a great thrill." said BYU head coach Steve Cleveland. "To share this in front of an entire community was something very special for me." Ainge's jersey, number 22, was retired and now hangs from the rafters in Provo. BYU also paid tribute to lone senior Travis Hansen in his last home game as a Cougar. Hansen was the first player to cut a loop from the net, which came down after the game in celebration of the school's 26th conference championship. No player in BYU history helped the Cougars to a better home record over a three-year period than Travis Hansen. In the last three seasons the Cougars have posted a 44-1 mark. The next best three-year home record was 39-2 during the final three seasons of Ainge's BYU career from 1979-81. In the first half, BYU used a 17-2 run during an eight-minute stretch to build the lead to 14 points at 26-12. The Rams held the lead momentarily at 10-9 thanks to a bucket by Ronnie Clark with just under 15 minutes to play in the first half before the Cougars' run. In the second half, BYU controlled the boards, pounded the ball inside, and held CSU to 34.6 percent shooting to pull ahead. It is the first time this year the Rams were held below 40 percent shooting. "Right now BYU is playing better basketball than anyone in the league," said CSU head coach Dale Layer. Brian Greene led the Rams with 18 points and eight rebounds while Matt Nelson added 17. Ram sharp-shooter Andy Birley, who connected on six three-pointers in Fort Collins, was held to just one trey and only three points. The Cougars spread the ball around effectively with four players scoring in double figures. Mark Bigelow led all scorers with 20 points followed by Hansen with 15. Rafael Araujo scored 15 points and grabbed eight rebounds. Kevin Woodberry chipped in 10.
BYU received votes in the polls released on March 10. In the ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll, BYU was 32nd with 10 points. In the Associated Press Poll, BYU was 34th with 8 points. Two BYU opponents are in the top-25 of both polls. Creighton was ranked 17th (ESPN/USA Today) and 19th (AP) while Oklahoma State was rated 20th (ESPN/USA Today) and 23rd (AP).
BYU RATES HIGH IN RPI AND SAGARIN RATINGS
As a league, the Mountain West Conference has the sixth-best RPI rating in the nation. BYU had been the top-rated MWC team throughout much of the year in the Sagarin and RPI and enters the NCAA Tournament as the league's second-rated RPI team and top team in Sagarin. In the RPI computed by CBS.Sportsline.com after Sunday's results, BYU has a No. 18 rating while Utah is No. 17. In the RPI compiled by Collegiate Basketball News through Sunday's results, BYU is 19th and Utah is No. 16. BYU is rated 28th in the Sagarin Ratings with Utah at 38. Connecticut is rated 28 in both RPI ratings and is 23rd in Sagarin. Ratings for potential second round opponents are Stanford at No. 21 in both RPI ratings and 29th Sagarin and San Diego at 82 (CBN), 84 (CBS.Sportsline.com) and 87 (Sagarin).
STATISTICS SHOW STRENGTH
BYU's strong play and conference championship is reflected in the MWC statistics. BYU finished the regular season in the top three in 17 of 19 statistical categories in league play. BYU led in five statistical categories, was the second-rated team in six and finished third in six more. The lone two categories BYU was not in the top three were FG percentage (5th) and blocks (7th).
COUGARS PLAYED TOP MWC SCHEDULE, AMONG NATION'S TOUGHEST
BYU has achieved an 23-8 record playing the toughest schedule of any MWC team and among the tougest in the nation. BYU's schedule was rated the 18th toughest in the nation by Collegiate Basketball News RPI and 34th most difficult by CBS.Sportsline.com. BYU's schedule is rated No. 65 in the Sagarin Ratings. Utah has the next toughest MWC schedule (27th by CBN and 44TH by CBS.Sportsline.com, 86th by Sagarin). This year's schedule features 17 games against teams who qualified for postseason play last year. Six teams earned a conference regular season or league tournament title. BYU's non-conference schedule included teams from 10 different conferences -- Pac-10, Big 12, Atlantic 10, Big Sky, Big West, Mid-American, Mid-Continent, Missouri Valley, West Coast and Western Athletic.
BYU is 21-1 this year when holding opponents below 70 points but 2-7 when the opposition reaches the 70-point mark. In the five-plus season Steve Cleveland has been BYU's coach, the Cougars are 88-16 (.846) when holding opponents below 70 points. BYU's winning percentage drops off substantially when BYU opponents have scored between 70-79 points. BYU's record is 17-35 (.327) in those games during the Cleveland era.
BYU had a five-game winning streak ended with its MWC Tournament semifinal loss to Colorado State in overtime Friday. It's the longest winning streak of the year, along with the five straight victories it recorded to open this season, the longest overall streak since winning eight straight games last year in preseason. BYU has lost back-to-back games only once this year (vs. Oklahoma State and at Weber State).The Cougars have won 34 straight home games over a non-conference opponents. BYU had its nation-leading 44-game home victory streak come to an end vs. Utah this year. BYU has made a three-point shot in 209 consecutive games since going 0-9 in a 75-67 loss to CS Fullerton on Nov. 22, 1996.
SHOOTING, REBOUNDING SUCCESS
BYU has outshot 23 of 31 opponents this year (except USF, OSU, Weber State, Utah (twice), CSU (twice), UNLV). BYU has outrebounded 21 opponents. BYU has shot 45 percent or better in 22 games this year (losing only once twice at Creighton and vs. Utah). BYU shot a season-low 34.5 percent at UNLV. BYU shot 55.9 percent at AFA, the sixth time this year, and and second time on the road, that BYU has shot better than 50 percent. BYU shot a season-high 58.3 percent vs. Idaho State. BYU outboarded Idaho State 43-19, Air Force 55-21 and UNLV 47-31.
FROM THE LINE
BYU topped 80 percent free throw shooting for the 10th time this year by shooting .826 vs. New Mexico in its MWC Tournament win. BYU shot a season-high .929 (26-28) to top 90 percent shooting for the second time at New Mexico (also at CSU, 19-21, .905). The Cougars have shot better than 70 percent in all but six games, with all but one of those six games being at home (.550 vs. San Diego; .652 vs. AFA; .654 vs. Pepperdine; .657 at USF; .667 vs. Idaho State; and .692 vs. SDSU). Seven Cougars are shooting 72 percent or better from the line, with four topping 80 percent. John Allen made his first 19 straight until missing his last attempt vs. Utah (19-20), while Ricky Bower is shooting 88.9 percent (48-54). Mark Bigelow has had strings of 19 straight makes and 18 straight makes this year. He was the MWC-leader in league games at .933 (42-45) and BYU is the top MWC free throw shooting team at .753
FROM LONG RANGE
Four Cougars are making 40 percent or better on their three-point attempts, with three making at least 43 percent. BYU was ranked 16th in the nation as a team in the NCAA statistics released March 10. BYU is 13-1 this year when shooting 40 percent or better from three-point range. The lone defeat was at Creighton, where BYU shot 41.2 percent. BYU has shot 50 percent or better in 10 games, topping 60 percent once in the season-opening win vs. Toledo (8-13, .615).
BYU has held 19 opponents to 42 percent or lower shooting, and has held six opponents below 35 percent shooting, including holding Air Force to 21.6 percent in Provo, including 15.2 percent on threes. The Falcons came in ranked 8th in the nation in three-point shooting. BYU held the Falcons to .389 shooting, .200 on threes, in Clune Arena. BYU become the first team to hold Colorado State below 40 percent shooting this year. The top shooting team in the nation, CSU managed just .383 shooting, .214 on threes, in the Marriott Center. BYU held Pepperdine, coming in shooting 47.1 percent, to its second-lowest percentage of the year at 34.5 percent. BYU held UCSB, a team that came in after seven games shooting 50.3 percent from the floor and 45.5 percent on threes, to 36.5 percent and 26.1 percent on threes. BYU has held 14 opponents this year to 60 points or less. BYU is 54-3 under Steve Cleveland when holding opponents below 60 points. BYU held Air Force to only 33 points in Provo, the lowest output vs. BYU since the Cougars beat Princeton 51-32 on Dec. 31, 1982. BYU held the Falcons to a Marriott Center record 10 points in the first half. The Falcons scored just 43 points at Clune Arena. BYU lost at UNLV because of its offensive struggles but the Cougars played well defensively, holding the MWC's top scoring team to 61 points on its own court on 40 percent shooting, including 25 percent on threes. On the year, BYU's defense yields a combined 63.7 points per game.
COMBO GUARD MICHAEL ROSE SIGNS WITH COUGARS
During the early signing period in November, BYU signed Michael Rose, a 6-foot-1 combo guard out of Spring Woods High School in Houston Texas. A four-year starter, Rose averaged 16.3 points, five rebounds and three assists playing shooting guard as a junior. A preseason All Greater Houston First Team selection, Rose is playing point guard his senior season. He earned first-team All-District 21 5A honors the past two seasons and was the team MVP in 2002. He helped his team to second-place District 21 finishes the past two years. In is first season, he was named District 21 Freshman of the Year. Rose has played four years on the Houston Hoops summer AAU team that also features top-five recruits Ndidi Eby and Kendrick Perkins. As the team's starting shooting guard, Rose averaged 14 points and helped the team earn a No. 1 national rating for much of the summer. Rose possesses a strong academic resume, ranking second in his class of 365 seniors. He was recruited by Houston, St. Louis, Utah State, Colorado State, Texas Christian, Texas A&M, Tennessee and Illinois. He is the nephew of BYU Associate Head Coach Dave Rose.
CLEVELAND, BYU PLAYERS RECIEVE MWC POSTSEASON HONORS
The Mountain West Conference announced its 2002-03 men's basketball awards Monday. The league's eight men's head coaches along with a selected media panel picked the all-conference teams, coach, player, freshman and defensive awards. BYU's head coach Steve Cleveland captured Coach of the Year honors, while Ruben Douglas of New Mexico was selected the Player of the Year. Freshman of the Year honors went to Evan Burns of San Diego State, while UNLV's Marcus Banks and BYU's Travis Hansen were named co-Defensive Players of the Year. Four of Cleveland's BYU players joined him in being honored by the MWC media and coaches. BYU's lone senior Hansen was selected to the All-MWC First Team, while juniors Mark Bigelow and Rafael Araujo were voted to the All-MWC Third Team and sophomore Jared Jensen receiving honorable mention. Hansen joined New Mexico's Ruben Douglas as the only consensus first-team selections. A 6-foot-6 guard, Travis Hansen was selected first-team All-MWC for the first time in his career after being named to the second-team in 2001-02. Hansen leads the Cougars in scoring and ranks fourth in the league (conference games only) with a 17.8 points per game average. A first-team NABC District 13 selection this season, Hansen led BYU in scoring in nine of 14 league games and scored 18 or more points in seven games.
TRAVIS HANSEN EARNS NABC
All-DISTRICT 13 FIRST TEAM AND USBWA DISTRICT 8 HONORS
BYU senior guard Travis Hansen was named to the U.S. Basketball Writers Association District 8 Team and to the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) District 13 First Team. Selected and voted on by member coaches of the NABC, the NABC District Teams represent the finest basketball players across the country. The 150 student-athletes, from 15 districts, are now eligible for the NABC Division I All-American Team to be announced at the conclusion of the 2002-2003 NCAA men's basketball season. BYU senior guard Travis Hansen earned District 13 First Team honors, along with New Mexico's Ruben Douglas, Utah's Britton Johnsen, Weber State's Jermaine Boyette and Colorado State's Brian Greene. Second team members include Uche Nsonwu-Amadi and Donta Richardson of Wyoming, Tony Bland of San Diego State, Carl English of Hawaii and Kirk Snyder of Nevada. Hansen earns the honor for the first time. The last Cougar to earn first-team honors was Mekeli Wesley in 2001. BYU's Terrell Lyday was a second-team selection in 2001. Other MWC players earning NABC honors this year were UNLV's Marcus Banks (first team) and Dalron Johnson (second team), who were recognized out of District 15.
BIGELOW, HANSEN MOVING UP THE SCORING CHARTS
Mark Bigelow became the 34th Cougar and only ninth junior to reach 1,000 career points this year vs. Southern Utah. Despite an injury-shortened first season as a sophomore, Travis Hansen became BYU's 35th 1,000-point scorer with his first bucket at Utah. Hansen is now 26th on the scoring list and can move into 25th place with his next bucket and needs just 13 points to take the 24th spot. Bigelow is 15th and will move into 14th with 18 more points.
BIGELOW SETS CAREER THREE-POINT RECORD AT SAN DIEGO STATE
Junior swingman Mark Bigelow equaled his career-best 5 triples in a game at San Diego State to surpass BYU assistant coach Andy Toolson (141) as BYU's career three-point leader. Bigelow now has 171 treys. Bigelow leads BYU with 62 threes this year (BYU record is 74 by Toolson) while shooting a career-best 44.2 percent from long range. Last year his 65 threes was the fifth-best single season total on the BYU record books.
PICKED FOURTH, BYU FINISHES TIED FOR MWC CROWN
Picked to finish fourth this year in the Mountain West Conference by the league's media members, BYU earned a share of the regular season title for the second time in the last three years. BYU has a won 58.7 percent (430-303) of its games all-time vs. MWC opponents. As an overall athletic program, BYU dominated the Mountain West in its first three seasons, winning 63 percent of all MWC titles.
BYU ON THE ROAD
BYU is 6-5 on the road this year, including a 5-2 MWC conference road record. Counting neutral court games, BYU is 10-7 away from the Marriott Center this year.
NEUTRAL COURT RECORD
BYU is 13-9 on a neutral court under Steve Cleveland, including a 4-2 mark this year. BYU earned three wins at the Paradise Jam in St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands to claim the Jam Title. Its two losses were to Colorado State in the MWC Tournament semifinals and to Oklahoma State at the Touchstone Energy All-College Classic in Oklahoma City. The Cougars have won eight of their last 12 neutral court contests.
BYU PLAYED MAJORITY OF NON-CONFERENCE GAMES AWAY FROM HOME
BYU played eight games away from home and seven in the Marriott Center during the non-conference schedule, earning an 11-4 overall record with a perfect 7-0 home mark and a 4-4 record away from Provo. Wyoming was the only Mountain West team to play as many road games during the preseason as BYU. The Cowboys were also the only MWC team to win more non-league games away from home, going 5-3. The Cougars earned their 4-4 record playing the toughest non-league schedule of any MWC team. Air Force played seven road games, going 3-4; Utah played six, going 3-3; SDSU, UNLV and CSU all played half as many road games as BYU, earning 3-1, 3-1 and 0-4 records, respectively. New Mexico played the fewest road games, going winless in three games away from The Pit.
BYU FINISHING 101ST YEAR OF BASKETBALL
Celebrating 100 years of basketball, BYU is in its 101st season this year. Since the first season of BYU basketball in 1903, BYU has achieved a 1450-930 (.609) overall record with 21 different coaches at the helm. The combined efforts of these men have provided the Cougars with 80 winning seasons in 100 years. BYU has won 26 conference titles and is making its 29th postseason tournament appearances with 20 NCAA bids and nine NIT berths. The Cougars won the 1951 and 1966 NIT titles and advanced to the Elite Eight of the NCAA tournament in 1981, highlighted by Danny Ainge's length-of-the-court dash to defeat Notre Dame at the buzzer. Ainge was named the nation's top player as the John Wooden Award and Eastman Award winner. Twenty-three players have received All-America recognition while NBA teams have selected a Cougar 41 times in its annual draft. BYU has the nation's 11th longest rivalry, dating back to 1909, against the University of Utah. BYU and Utah have the 10th longest rivalry in terms of games played with 233 contests. Utah leads the series for only the third time with its win this year, holding a two-game edge for the first time at 118-116. For more information on BYU's 100-year history, please consult the 2002-03 BYU media guide.
BYU AMONG TOP-40 All-TIME WINNINGEST BASKETBALL PROGRAMS
With its all-time record of 1450-930 (.609), BYU is the ranked 40th all-time in winning percentage among all Division I basketball programs. In terms of total wins, BYU is in the top 25. The Cougars have had 81 winning seasons in this their 101st year of basketball and are making their 29th postseason appearances, including 20 NCAA bids, and won 26 conference championships.